Germany Orders Porsche To Recall 22,000 SUVs Over Alleged Defeat Device (Updated)

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When all’s said and done, Volkwsagen’s never-ending Dieselgate saga may be seen as the tip of the iceberg, and not just an explosive revelation from an automaker that explicitly set out to cheat. Several automakers have been ensnared in accusations of diesel cheating and now, in Germany, Porsche has to recall 22,000 Cayennes for allegedly equipping the vehicles with illegal software to skirt emissions test.

Germany’s transport minister, Alexander Dobrindt, ordered a recall of the Cayennes and said the nation’s government would ban any registrations of the three-liter crossover until a software fix is made available, according to the Financial Times.


The latest emissions missive comes amid a separate, evolving scandal that Germany’s largest carmakers have run a cartel of sorts since the 1990s, colluding on tech, suppliers, and prices.

The recall comes a month after it emerged that Germany had been investigating Porsche for the use of defeat devices. As part of that investigation, it appears, the government established that Porsche Cayenne sport utility vehicles contained a defeat device, which, according to FT, worked when the car was in an official lab test. When the Cayenne hit the road, FT reports, the device switched off.

A spokesperson for Porsche didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. We’ll update if we hear back.


Update, 9:45 a.m. Friday: Porsche sent along a statement by email:

Porsche has detected irregularities in the engine control software during internal investigations and has actively pointed this out to the Kraftfahrtbundesamt (KBA), German Federal Motor Transport Authority. The irregularities are not related to the transmission control software. Corrections by means of a software update within the scope of a recall were agreed with the authority. 

Regardless of the recall, Porsche continues to carry out internal audits on its vehicles and derive optimizations from them. Furthermore, the company is still in close contact with the authorities, in particular the German Federal Motor Transport Authority, on all current matters. 

For Porsche, it was and is important: We take every hint seriously and examine carefully. If there is something that is not ok, then we tackle it and get it right. 

As vehicle manufacturer, Porsche assumes full responsibility towards the customer. Porsche is dedicated to fulfilling customer expectations with regard to quality, integrity and service in its entirety.